Friday, February 14, 2020


Happy belated New Year!.
Someone recently asked me to look back at 2019 and describe it in one word. So many words came to my mind – blessed, thankful, challenging… but I guess when I boil it all down the one word is really – SPECIAL!
Pictured: Chad and his children at the ESP CHOP event

2019 was unique in so many ways. We celebrated our 25th anniversary and produced a commemorative anniversary book that celebrated the history of our company. We conducted the second Quinquennial Earl S. Punchard Golf Invitational in September which honors my late father and founder of Comstar. While the golf tournament recognizes his legacy, we raised more than $277,000 for the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia – making it the largest-ever community fundraising outing that benefited CHOP.

We also had some exciting developments in-house. In October, we announced that Tom Ortolano joined us as Vice President of Business Development and Strategy. We are so lucky to add someone of his pedigree to our staff. In fact, over the course of 2019 we added eight employees and now have more than 50 people dedicated to serving our customers. To put a bow on our hiring efforts in 2019 by appointing Candes Spencer to our sales team at the end of the year. Candes is formerly of Corning Optical Communications and will help lead sales in new Southern markets for us.
Comstar's Collegeville, PA location
Then of course there were a number of other exciting things that happened at Comstar. We expanded our operations in North Carolina; added to our headcount  to grow along with our customer base in that region; completed an expansion project at our headquarters location to nearly double our office space; and so many more highlights.

Certainly 2019 was not without complications but I was extremely proud of how our staff overcame them.  I’m always encouraged by the support and leadership displayed by our employees day in and day out. We always rise to the occasion while remaining focused on our core daily responsibilities – no matter the challenge. It’s this Comstar way of working together as a team that gives me great pride as we continue to grow and support the specific needs of our business while remaining flexible and nimble to support our customers.

With all that said, the word SPECIAL seems appropriate for me to describe 2019 – and I think in 2020 we’ll continue to ramp up our growth. Fiber-rich networks will continue to dominate headlines; 5G already does and we all understand the impact this technology will have on our everyday lives; federal regulations regarding pole attachments and rights-of-way seem to have settled down and construction of fiber networks will hopefully progress more rapidly; and consolidation of carriers will continue; among other things that will impact the industry and our business.

I think we all had time to catch our breath over the holidays and now we’re ready the success and challenges the new year will inevitably bring. I’m sure when I look back a year from now, I’ll strongly consider describing 2020 as SPECIAL – and quite honestly, I wouldn’t want it any other way.


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